Cameroon: bill pushes for gender mainstreaming in development policies
Published on Sat, 2010-07-10 15:16
The Federation of Cameroon Civil Society Organizations (FOSCAM, for its initials in French), Social Watch’s Focal Point in Cameroon, participated in the elaboration of a bill that seeks to mainstream a gender perspective into national policies on growth and employment in the country.
“It is necessary to encourage the participation of all social strata in the political sphere” said Jean Mballa Mballa, FOSCAM’s national co-delegate at the opening of a multi-stakeholder Forum held 20 March, 2010. The event was convened to promote gender mainstreaming in development strategies and for that reason parliamentarians, government representatives, political parties, international institutions, the private sector and civil society were invited.
FOSCAM took the opportunity to present a new project bill that seeks to include the gender perspective into the Strategy Document for Growth and Employment (DSCE for its French acronym) being prepared by Cameroon’s government in order to promote development for a 10 year period.
The bill seeks to systematize the integration of a gender perspective into all levels of government and policies for growth and employment through a binding legal framework to organize implementation and monitoring.
Some of the proposals to achieve this objective are:
1. Give a clear definition of the principle of gender mainstreaming in policies and strategies for growth and employment
2. Develop a down-to-earth mechanism to promote gender mainstreaming, especially through quotas by gender, age and disability.
3. A monitoring system that allows the correct implementation of the DSCE
4. The creation of a promotional entity at the national level that brings together women’s organizations and movements similar to the National Youth Council; an experience that will be used both for the National Women’s Council and the structuring of the National Gender Observatory.
The Cameroonian civil society, the forerunner of this initiative, is working as a citizen’s "Think Tank" and designing an advocacy strategy to promote the bill in diverse areas including Parliament, Ministries and other institutions across the country.